**Credit Tannis Nielsen for the art work
The intention of this page is a space for family members to honour the lives of their loved ones through personal stories, photos or other important aspects of someone's life. We hope this will balance the death related details the media tends to over focus on.
COMMUNITY DATABASE DATA-ENTRY HAS BEGUN!
No More Silence is creating a community run database documenting violent deaths of Indigenous women/Two-Spirit and Trans in collaboration with Families of Sisters In Spirit, community partner The Native Youth Sexual Health Network and with the assistance of Dr. Janet Smylie (Métis) and Conrad Prince of the Well Living House at the Keenan Research Centre. We are beginning the work by creating a research methodology based on Ontario data. So far we have entered 69 women's names from Ontario nations who have died violent deaths since the 1960s.
It's time for community to build our own structures independent of government and institutional funding. The purpose of the database is to honour our women and provide family members with a way to document their loved ones passing.
These are core values and beliefs about engaging in organizing around violence against Indigenous women, specific those who have gone missing or died violent deaths:
Ceremony - The process of supporting each other in this work is a process of ceremony, healing, grieving and honouring. Public Mourning as a political act that flies in the face of societal indifference and complicity.
Support not shame or stigma - No one life is more or less valuable than anyone else. We must unlearn stereotypes about people who use drugs, trade sex, experience homelessness or housing insecurity etc. This includes encouraging conversations about how to reduce the harm associated with these behaviours while meeting people where they’re at.
Decolonizing gender and sexuality - Unlearning homophobia and transphobia, supporting Two-Spirit, Trans and gender non-conforming people.
Changing the Story - Resisting and shifting victim blaming approaches, languages and narratives about who can or does go missing or face violence.
Sovereignty - Over our bodies and stories. Trusting that people, especially women, are capable of making decisions about their bodies, safety and lives.
Alternatives to the state - This work is not funded by state-based agencies or in collaboration with law enforcement. We rely on the donations and volunteer work of partners, families, and advocates. We believe in actively building alternatives to the police, in responding to violence though we recognize sometimes that is the only option available to families or individuals.
Community collaboration - Collaborating with other families, Indigenous peoples & communities is a way to support one another, highlight other work and build each other up.
Humility/Compassion - Humility and compassion within this work is part of remaining open to hearing feedback, teachings and acknowledging compassionately that everyone has something to share.
If you would like a loved one's information included please get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out this radio interview with Audrey Huntley, co-founder of No More Silence and Krysta Williams of the Native Youth Sexual Health Network: Naming, understanding, challenging violence against indigenous women.